It was a heady experience, competing with nearly 500 contestants. First prize was a $200 gift certificate for Uwajimaya www.uwajimaya.com, which has four locations, including the Uwajimaya Village in the International District downtown. We're planning a family outing to spend the day, shopping and having lunch, once we can get all the go-back-to-school stuff ironed out. It'll be a nice adventure for October.
Mila was my wingman and upon arrival, we met Nancy Leson, who I immediately identified as coming from my home planet. We felt very at ease with her as she guided us to the broadcast room. Dick Stein was far away in the Tacoma studio, yet... just as close as the earphones on my head. Mila stood by and observed me flub the spelling of l e t t u c e as I spoke into the microphone, which magically (with help from Stein) edited that, and everyone's um's and ah's. The runners up went first, then me.
Embraces your persimmon.
Lettuce rap our love."
The studio was an experience in and of itself. Mila followed wide-eyed as we spied on Marcia Ball doing a live performance in the large studio, reserved for KPLU broadcasts. We watched her play the piano and met her at the end of our tour of the premises. That tour brought an introduction to Nick Morrison, Production Manager/Jazz and Blues Host and I tried to not gush, but I love the guy.
We also met Bellamy Pailthorp, the Environmental Reporter for the station and the back of Gabriel Spitzer, busy working on a Health and Science piece. Simone Alicia, an intern, had her own desk and headset and both Mila and I expressed our envy, when we heard her in a detailed report a few days later, investigating the new rental car rage. What fun it would be to work at KPLU!
Our tour ended at the Wall of Fame, where guest artists sign their names on a white board. I thought about the disaster that could ensue, leaning against it. Nancy pointed out John Pizzarelli's self portrait of his nose!
There are some impressive autographs on that wall and I was humbled, wishing I could take the time to peruse the length.
Mila and a gorgeous cupcake, compliments of Tom Douglas Dahlia Bakery.
Mila and I had lunch at the Cherry Street Cafe and while we were munching away, discussing how much fun we had, my phone rang: Nancy Leson, hoping we had a decent photo for the website. Good thing Mila had taken a couple with my phone.
The next morning we rose too late to hear the first broadcast of Food for Thought but caught it in a later segment and there was my voice, which my friend, Linda, far away in Germany, told me sounds light and youthful and beautiful. Thank you, Linda.
And thank you, KPLU and Dick Stein and Nancy Leson and all the wonderful people who voted for me. I am incredibly honored.
HERE IS THE LINK: